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welcome back to nhk world "newsline". japanese prime minister shinzo abe is starting off the new year facing a long to-do list, and as he sorts through it all, he's firming up his priorities. abe held his first news conference the year on friday and he underscored his dedication to strengthening the japanese economy. the prime minister says he plans to decide on a fiscal 2013 draft budget within this month. he also confirmed he will submit a large scale supplementary budget to the diet for quick enactment. abe says he wants the two
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budgets to finance spending seamlessly over the next 15 months to restore a strong economy. he also says the bank of japan should adopt bold monetary policies in close coordination with his government. >> translator: the bank of japan's monetary policy is critically important in terms of foreign exchange rates and in achieving a 2% inflation target. i strongly expect the central bank to act responsibly. >> prime minister abe also spoke about nuclear power. he indicated his government will consider allowing utilities to build new plants. >> translator: the government will go over what we've learned about the nuclear accident and check the progress of nuclear safety technology. i would like to carefully
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consider whether new plants can be built and it will take a certain amount of time. >> on diplomacy, abe said he'll give top priority to strengthening the japan/u.s. alliance. he said he hopes to visit the united states soon for a summit with president barack obama. >> translator: through the meeting i want to show my country and also the world that the strong bond between japan and the u.s. has been restored. >> abe said japanese and u.s. officials are now working out the timing of his visit. prime minister abe's special envoy conveyed the willingness to improve ties with south korea. the president-elect park gave a positive response. they pointed out the need to face bilateral issues. abe hopes the new governments can build good relations. he handed park a letter from the prime minister expressing the wish. park said south korea and japan need each other in many ways. she said she hopes to work on reconciliation and cooperation
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while facing issues related to their common history. >> translator: we confirmed our shared view that we should improve ties from a broad perspective, even though there are several outstanding bilateral issues. south korean president lee myung-bak visited disputed islands in the sea of japan last august. japan claims the islands which are controlled by south korea, the visit angered many japanese and inflamed emotions in south korea. as japanese politicians try to repair relations with their counterparts in south korea, a legal case is presenting yet another challenge. a chinese man accused of committing a crime in tokyo has returned home after a south korean court denied an extradition request by japan. liu qiang is suspected of setting a fire at the yasukuni shrine. liu served a ten-month prison sentence in south korea in connection with another case. he threw molotov cocktails at
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the japanese embassy in seoul. they believe he set fire at the yasukuni shrine in december of 2011. the shine honors war dead including convicted japanese war criminals. the authorities demanded liu's extradition based on a treaty. south korean court rejected the request on thursday. it ruled he's exempt from the practice addition treaty on the grounds he committed crimes based on his political views and he considers yasukuni shrine a symbol of japanese justification for its past colonial wars and not merely a religious facility. liu flew to shanghai on friday. prime minister abe's envoy protested against the court decision when he met in seoul with south korean foreign minister kim sung-hwan. he responded the judgment of left in the hands of the judicial branch in accordance with law. traders at the tokyo stock exchange are buying and selling
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for the first time in 2013. they also mark their first day of business as part of the japan exchange group. >> translator: we hope to build relations where both parties can clearly state their positions without being carried away. by emotions or sentiments and better understand each other and economic and cultural aspects. the chinese suspect he flew to shanghai on friday. japan and china do not have an extradition treaty. people in japan are getting back to the grind after the new year holidays. streets, trains and offices were full on friday across the country. residents in the northeast are heading into 2013 facing the work they left behind by the
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2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear accident. people who went to the first auction of the year at this market in iwate prefecture are still seeing fewer fish than they did before the disaster. market spokespersons say the catch between april and december last year is almost 90% of what it used to be. still bidders were able to buy cuttlefish, salmon, scallops and other fish on friday. >> translator: i'm very happy that we can hold new year's opening sales as usual. >> reconstruction minister takuji nemoto gave his first instructions the year to senior officials from his agency. >> translator: i ask you to tackle your work in a creative manner. sectionalism could hamper you in dealing with various issues but i'll back you up politically. >> officials at tokyo electric
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power started their work at a new headquarters in fukushima prefecture. tepco opened the office so it could better handle damage claims and decontamination work related to the accident. >> translator: we will always keep in mind how disaster victims are suffering. we will do everything we can to help evacuees return home as soon as possible. >> tepco intends to station more than 4,000 employees at the fukushima recovery headquarters. the u.s. labor department released the latest jobs report for december. it shows a slight improvement. the jobless rate has been below 8% for four straight months. u.s. employers added 155,000 jobs in the non-farm sector, that includes health care, food
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and beverage services and construction. the total is more than they forecast. in november, employers added 161,000 jobs. irt wa it was revised from 146,000. traders at the tokyo stock exchange were buying and selling on friday for the first time in 2013. they also marked their first day of business as part of the japan exchange group. the tse has merged with the osaka securities exchange, japan's second largest force. >> reporter: the celebration of the launch and listing of the jpx took place on friday morning. the market value of companies
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listed on the group becomes the world's fourth largest. >> translator: global investors will choose our exchange so we can become the number one in asia. >> reporter: the tsc used to be one of the world's largest stock markets both in terms of market value and trading volume. however, trading declined after japan's asset bubble burst in the early 1990s. [ bell tolls ] the first day of trading began with women in traditional japanese attire ringing a bell. the market ended 10688 on friday, the highest closing level just before the march 2011 disaster. share prices on the tokyo stock exchange have been on the rise since november last year. the major challenge for the new stock exchange will be whether it can attract mid and long-term
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investments from inside and outside japan. they aim to realize the full vitality of the markets and increase the number of new listings. from the tokyo stock exchange, nhk world. japanese business leaders commented on the country's economic outlook for this year. >> translator: i believe the yen will continue to weaken for some time and the real economy is likely to improve. at least through the middle of this year. that includes a recovery in exports. >> translator: led by the united states, overseas economies are picking up strength. demand from outside japan is increasing steadily. the japanese economy is likely to follow a recovery path, supported in part by needs created by restoration projects in the disaster-hit region.
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additional monetary policy easing will also help the economy to grow. >> meanwhile, a chief analyst is a little more cautious. he says he's not sure if the decline will continue. he warns that the yen could start strengthening again if the u.s. economy recovery loses steam or if japan's efforts to pull itself out of deflation fail. asia plays an increasing my important role in the global economy but some question whether the region can sustain its growth. starting today we'll be bringing you a series of interviews with business and financial leaders. the head of the asian development bank gave us an interview. >> reporter: while the global economic outlook remains uncertain, asian region remains a bright spot.
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>> to some extent compared with the u.s. and europe and also compared with latin america and africa. asia will be the fastest growing economy in the world. >> reporter: in contrast, the japanese economy is showing signs of weakness. the new prime minister sinko abe says he wants to pull the country out of deflation. with the incoming administration, how could japan deal with that? >> i think the monetary policy all has some side effect. i understand. but what you have to recall is that what is the alternative? so bank of japan not just sitting a target but also
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mobilize all measures, policy measures and in particular, commit yourself to do in that way and to achieve the objective of 2% inflation. we should do anything and whatever amount. >> reporter: turning to china, many economists say the slowdown is the world's second largest economy has bottomed out. he shares that view but he knows that china's economic vitality won't justin long term. >> we expect slow income around 8% growth is quite possible for the chinese economy. but the issue is long term. labor force will soon start to decline in china. that chinese economy enjoy a dividend in the next decade or decades. >> how should asia be prepared when china slows down? >> india will become next leader of asia's growth. it has a large population and
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the income is still very low. that means there is huge room for catching up. and then, of course, there is pakistan, bangladesh, vietnam, many countries in asia. so i'm quite optimistic about the long term growth prospect of asia as a whole. >> reporter: the asian economy has stayed relatively firm despite a recession in europe and a slowdown in the u.s. but kudo points out that more cooperation is needed in the region to prepare for further headwinds. >> i think countries should create more to try to stabilize interregional relationship. most of the countries have no capital and they trade freely. it has been at the center of the
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regional cooperation in asia and it needs regional development and will continue to be so or they must strengthen their activities in the area of regional corporation integration. >> a pakistani girl who was shot by islamic militants has been discharged from a british hospital. the hospital said that the 15-year-old left the day before because shes with well enough to stay with her family in britain.
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she was shot in the head in october by the pakistani taliban for supporting girls' rights to be educated. she was transferred from pakistan to britain for treatment. al jazeera set its sights on one of the world's biggest tv markets, the united states. the satellite television network acquired a cable channel founded by former u.s. vice president al gore. al gore and a partner launched the network in 2005.
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it's available to about 60 million households. the government of qatar owns al jazeera. executives hope to double the number of their employees in the u.s. to more than 300. this man runs the network. he believes al jazeera could make a positive contribution to news available in the u.s. they launched their english news channel in 2006. the network gained international attention for going behind the scenes during the iraq war. reporters asked tough questions about u.s. military operations and about the u.s.-led occupation. spokesperson say viewers in the u.s. make up almost 40% of all online viewing but the image has kept cable tv companies from carrying it and english language programs can only be viewed in select u.s. cities. a breed of cat from thailand was once prized by people who believed it brings good luck but today, it's at risk.
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the elegant felines have caught hearts of cat lovers abroad where they fetched high prices but not at home. where foreign brands are preferred. efforts are under way to reverse the trend by promoting the charm of the cats and preventing them from being crossed with other breeds. nhk world has more. >> reporter: this blue-gray short-haired cat comes from here in thailand. the breed is named after a region in thailand. they have a long history and are mentioned in text that date back 200 to 300 years. their fur is soft and shines. its eyes glean like dew drops on the leaf.
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it was initially thought to bring good luck. due to the rarity of the breed, today a single animal can cost as much as $5,000 in western countries of japan. but in the native thailand, it's a growing common in country that even at pet shows they are rarely seen. >> translator: younger pet owners may not even know korats. they prefer foreign breed which have more variety in their coloring. >> reporter: the korat region has a rich past. ruins of the once powerful empire still stand. this man has been breeding
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korats for 17 years. he's trying to save them. the cats are being increasingly crossed with other breeds. today, breeders estimate that only 500 pure korats remain in the country. >> translator: no one develops a breed until distinguishing characteristics are stable from one generation to the next. we call them korat cats without proof. i want to breed purebreds for the country.
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>> reporter: he served here, where he had cats, including korats and siamese. the breed is important but points out also given for the shape and facial form. the characteristics the cats are judged by. >> translator: i am part of a cat korat conservation. they're a national treasure but are almost gone. i feel i can help in some way. taking part in the cat contest also publicizes the breed. >> reporter: the government is also taking steps to save the indigenous breed by mapping the korat's dna. the purpose is to develop pedigree standards.
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they hope the project will increase thai breeds. >> translator: we're not talking about simple conservation but work that can create careers and raise profits. this means being able to export the cats and bring in foreign income. most importantly, the cats will still belong to the original community. >> reporter: they are being looked at as national treasures, effort are under way to protect them and increasing them inside and outside of country. residents throughout southern australia are on alert as wildfires whipped up by powerful winds tear across the land. the region is suffering through a record heat wave. the dry air and strong winds have helped spread the fires more than 50 places. no injuries have been reported. several cities have reported temperatures of over 40 degrees
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celsius. a high of 44 degrees was recorded in one town. the tasmanian city of hobar experienced a record high of over 41 degrees. state governments are advising people to stay home and drink water. australia experienced massive wildfires in february 2009. 173 people were killed and more than 400 others injured. it may snow for the first time this winter in tokyo. rachael ferguson is here with that and the rest of the weather. ra rachael? >> you're absolutely right, we could see the first snowfall in tokyo on saturday. good news for those of you living near the sea of japan. behind me looking very dry. that very heavy snow will be settling down. good news for those of you
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living there. behind me, looking very dry, in fact. but there's plenty of frigid air in place. that is bringing temperatures down. in seoul, your forecast high on saturday is going to be minus two with a low of about minus 11 into beijing. one degree for the high. north korea is also suffering under this frigid cold. it's not all bad news, though. we have some advantages. we go to the city of harvin to show you some of those advantages. what a beautiful sight here. this is the ice festival, takes place in january every year, lasts the whole of the month. since 1963, tourists have been coming here to look at 2,000 ice sculptures, and the highlight is a crystal palace, the world's tallest ice sculpture. people in charge of the event making provisions for children
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and adults to enjoy theme park style rides, including ice biking and bumper cars. and japan also has its own ice festival in hokkaido. that happens in february. head now to the americas. and it is a very quiet day today. take a look at this high and dry across much of the continent. we are watching a small snowstorm moving through new mexico and texas and moving toward the gulf of mexico, turning over and will leave behind significant snowfall. up to 25 centimeters and off the coast, that's moving across the rockies and it will expand across and toward the international west. out toward the northeast there, is a low pushing through parts of quebec and that will be heading across new england, but really just bringing a few snow showers to you. temperatures seasonal. pretty much what you'd expect in the first week of january. 2 degrees in new york city.
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3 in chicago. we have 8 degrees in oklahoma city. 9 in houston. overnight lows will be falling. okay, as question head to europe, a different story here. quite interesting what's going on. temperatures more likely the beginning of summer in the west this is what's going on. jet stream moving up toward the north. allowing warm air to come in and it is descending far down toward the southeast. as far south as southern greece, you could see sleet on sunday. precipitation in the center of the continent, rain clouds and snow, and snow north of the black sea, the low moving through and reflected in the temperatures, of course, just as you would expect. frigid out to the east. minus three and zero for the high in kiev. warming up to a very unseasonal nine degrees in berlin. nine in vienna, and paris and london. 11 degrees here. 12 madrid. up to 14 in lisbon. more in the first week of january.
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i'm sure residents are not complaining. here is the extended forecast. we'll be back in 30 minutes with more news. i'm gene otani in tokyo.
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from all of us here at nhk world, thanks for joining us. have a great day wherever you are. -- captions by vitac --

PBS January 4, 2013 7:00pm-7:30pm PST

News/Business. World events, business news and weather forecasts; broadcast in English. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY U.s. 11, Tokyo 9, South Korea 6, China 5, Nhk 4, Thailand 4, United States 3, Asia 3, Seoul 3, Europe 3, Tepco 2, Shanghai 2, Us 2, Britain 2, Mexico 2, Pakistan 2, Obama 1, Ra Rachael 1, Liu 1, Irt Wa 1
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